Academic Standards

2015 School Board Candidate Briefing Materials

The Education Policy Center has received numerous requests for the information it provided to school board candidates across Colorado this year. One of the Center’s primary goals is to educate local education leaders about important education policy issues, thereby equipping them to make smart, well-informed decisions in their school districts. As part of that effort, […]

Colorado’s K-12 Testing Debate: What Should Stay and What Should Go?

If there is a single word that defines the 2015 K-12 education conversation in Colorado and the United States, that word is “testing.” While testing and evaluations help set critical floors for quality, smart reforms can lift students even higher.

Amy Oliver Show: Mom Responds to Arne Duncan on Testing

Cheri Kiesecker, a Fort Collins mom, discusses U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan’s recent remarks and other developments related to Common Core and standardized testing.

Amy Oliver Show: Breaking Down Jeffco Myths

Jefferson County Students First executive director Sheila Atwell discusses the school board’s now performance pay plan, the goals to increase student achievement, and the true story behind the highly publicized teacher sickouts and student protests.

Amy Oliver Show: Can Colorado Have Testing Flexibility and Accountability?

Colorado State Board of Education chair Paul Lundeen talks about his goal to give schools and districts more flexibility in the standardized testing regime, while keeping academic results transparent and comparable and the system accountable to parents and taxpayers.

Amy Oliver Show: Dougco Starts Student Testing Conversation

Kevin Larsen, president of the Douglas County school board, discusses the rationale behind his district’s push for more flexibility around state testing requirements. House Bill 1202 was proposed to give the state authority to waive certain student assessments for high-performing school districts, though the bill since has been changed to call for a study of the situation.

Amy Oliver Show: America’s Low Test Scores Endanger Prosperity

Dr. Paul Peterson, director of Harvard University’s Program on Education Policy and Governance, makes the case that American schools and students are lagging in performance, with potentially harmful effects for the future economy.

Amy Oliver Show: Fighting Federal Overreach and Untangling the Knot

Marcia Neal from the State Board of Education takes on the tangled knot of Common Core standards, federal overreach, and state-level education reforms.

Amy Oliver Show: Parents Express More Concerns about Common Core

Tyler Hart of Parent Led Reform discusses Colorado’s growing anti-Common Core movement, and how to take on the challenges of withdrawing from the flawed and controversial national standards and testing.

DeGrow Lauds Dougco’s Push for Higher Academic Standards

An American Family Radio News (One News Now) report on the Douglas County Board of Education’s resolution opposing Common Core featured comments by senior education policy analyst Ben DeGrow: “Douglas County is saying that they want to strive for highest academic standards and expectations possible for their students, and the Common Core is not appropriate […]